U.S. Navy and Coast Guard forces joined with allies from the Royal Canadian Navy and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) for exercise Noble Chinook in the Northwestern Pacific on Aug. 22.

Noble Chinook is the latest event of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command-led Large Scale Global Exercise 23, a series of joint and multinational military activities and operations that demonstrate a robust presence and the strength of regional partnerships, interoperability and cooperation.

For Noble Chinook, USS Benfold joined USCGC Kimball; HMCS Vancouver, HMCS Ottawa, MV Asterix and JS Hyuga for the exercise.

“Through the exercise, we improve our tactical capabilities and strengthen cooperation with the participating navies,” said Capt. Okishige Hiroki, commanding officer of JS Hyuga. “The exercise also demonstrates the will and the capability of Japan, allied and like-minded partners to maintain rules-based international order in order to realize a free and open Indo-Pacific.”

The exercise provided a valuable opportunity to improve allied interoperability and conduct complex scenarios to improve combined readiness.

“These exercises provide our allied navies with an incredible opportunity to sustain and improve interoperability through dynamic, complex interactions at sea,” said Capt. Walter Mainor, commander of TF 71 and DESRON 15. “Operations like these continue to reinforce our confidence in protecting a free and open Indo-Pacific together, as a seamlessly integrated multinational force.”

Commander, Task Force 71, is U.S. 7th Fleet’s principal surface force. CTF 71 is responsible for the readiness, tactical and administrative responsibilities for forward-deployed Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers as well as any surface unit conducting independent operations in the region.

U.S. 7th Fleet is the U.S. Navy’s largest forward-deployed numbered fleet, and routinely interacts and operates with allies and partners in preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

By Editor